Toddlers & Books - Learning Time with Helen
One of my own mother’s homeschooling wisdom from 25+ years of homeschooling experience, to help in cultivating smooth and more peaceful days, is to fill up the toddlers/babies love tanks first thing in your homeschool day. It is something I have sought to do by spending a brief amount of quality time with my littles, but my consistency has come and gone in various seasons. I am just coming out of a very challenging baby season, so am beginning to cultivate this habit again. Just spending a few minutes of focused time with your toddlers at the beginning of your day can make such a huge difference in the peacefulness of the rest of the day. They feel loved and special.
One of my goals for 2019, is to include a 15 minute books and snuggle time with my toddler in my morning routine. My sweet little girl, Helen, is almost four years old. She often gets lost in the shuffle of homeschooling. Thankfully, she has been easy going, and enjoys playing with play dough, coloring, and doing her own “nature journal” during morning time. I did want to try to invest in her more intentionally this year by adding a 15 minute block of time in my morning routine to cuddle up with her and enjoy a selection of picture books, devotionals, spot it books, etc. So far she has absolutely loved it and won’t let me forget to include it each day!
Here are some of the books we are using and loving:
My Wonderful Nursery Rhyme Collection - This is a beautiful collection of nursery rhyme, mother goose, and other fun clapping/hand motion rhymes for littles. It is my favorite collection along these lines because it is literally so lovely and engaging for the eyes.
Richard Scarry’s Please and Thank You Book - A sweet humorous introduction to manners for little ones.
Paul Galdone Folk Tale Classics - We absolutely love Paul Galdone’s versions of folk and fairy tales. Highly recommend all his books.
Usborne’s Big Book of Things to Spot - this is such a fun book for practicing spotting and counting. All my kids have used it during the preschool years and loved it!
Early Learning Gakken Workbooks - We just started using these fun workbooks and Helen loves them! Great practice cutting, gluing, tracing, mazes, etc. specifically catered for 2, 3 & 4 year olds. Great workbooks to keep her engaged while I’m working with big kids as well.
Read Aloud Revival’s Picture Books Lists - Every month or so, Read Aloud Revival releases a wonderful list of picture books that center around a theme as in the season or holidays within that month. Great list of picture books! This month we were howling over Learning to Ski with Mr Magee. We love to reserve these books at the library and one and all like to read them throughout our days, but especially during this reading time with Helen.
Another fun thing to do with toddlers, is to let them try their hands at being a kitchen helper during meal prep. Helen loves sitting at the counter with me and practice chopping up veggies and fruits. They have wonderful child-friendly cutting tools available now that make for safe and fun eye-hand coordination practice. Plus its a special bonding time as well and great training for being little helpers at home.
Each season with littles is precious! Let’s make the most of it!